Unless they have a lot of resources, winemakers typically work for someone else making wine to suit the winery’s style. Occasionally they make little bits of interesting wines in their own style– more a labor of love than income boosters. This Saturday we’ll have two such winemakers in the shop pouring their small batch love childs. Erica Orr and Linn Scott will be here from 2 to 4. Come meet them and taste their creations.
In 2005, Erica Orr moved to Washington State and started an independent winemaking consulting and enology business in Woodinville, where she helped wineries like Baer, Mark Ryan, and Guardian rack up 90+ point scores. In 2013, she made the inaugural and limited release of her Old-Vine Chenin.
Linn Scott spends most of his working hours as the winemaker at Sparkman Cellars. In his spare time he and a couple of friends make a few small lots of wine respectfully modeled after wines that that they love to drink.
2016 Six Atmospheres Blanc de Blancs $32
The Six Atmospheres is a Washington State Method Champenoise sparkler. The fruit is from a special part of Bacchus Vineyard where the soil is deeper and the Chardonnay attains the right sugar and acidity for sparkling wine: The fruit is hand harvested, pressed whole cluster and fermented in neutral oak with traditional champagne yeast. Malolactic fermentation is blocked with sulfur addition following fermentation. The secondary fermentation was done in bottle as traditionally is done for sparkling wines and the wine has rested on the yeast lees or ‘en tirage’ for 24 months prior to degorgement. It is crisp and delicious.
2016 Wild Type Dionysus Vineyard Riesling $16
The fruit for the Wild Type comes from an old-vine (1970’s era) block of Riesling at Dionysus Vineyard. This is a terrific vineyard within the Sagemoor Farms family of vineyards farmed by Lacey Lybeck and Kent Waliser. These gnarled old vines are slow to ripen and hang a fairly light crop with excellent air-flow and fruit exposure which keeps disease pressure (particularly from botrytis) very low. The wine is a very smooth and creamy Riesling.
2018 Orr, Old Vine Chenin Blanc $25
Hand-harvested from vines nearly four decades old, this fresh, dry, 100% Chenin blanc was fermented naturally with native yeast. This Chenin is green-gold in color and has a nose of fresh lime zest, pineapple, and honeydew melon rind. It’s lively, bright, precise and a tiny bit saline in the mouth with a hint of cucumber peel and wet sidewalk in the finish.
2018 Orr Columbia Valley Grenache $25
91% Grenache, 7% Mourvèdre, 2% Syrah
Rustic and approachable, this hand-picked Grenache was fermented with a touch of Mourvèdre and Syrah and aged in mature French oak. The color is violet ruby and the nose is full of fresh raspberries, pomegranate, plum and black tea. It’s vibrant and lively all the way through to the lifted and mouth-watering finish.
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Madrona Wine Merchants offers free wine tastings featuring 3-5 selections on a theme every Saturday from 2 until the bottles run out and on Sunday, we offer a mini-tasting of two wines all day from 11-5.